Bad Vegan: How do Alec and Hilaria Baldwin fit into everything?

US actor Alec Baldwin and his wife Hilaria watch the match between Rafael Nadal of Spain and Marin Cilic of Croatia during their Round Four Men's Singles match at the 2019 US Open at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in New York on September 2, 2019. (Photo by Don Emmert / AFP) (Photo credit should read DON EMMERT/AFP via Getty Images)
US actor Alec Baldwin and his wife Hilaria watch the match between Rafael Nadal of Spain and Marin Cilic of Croatia during their Round Four Men's Singles match at the 2019 US Open at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in New York on September 2, 2019. (Photo by Don Emmert / AFP) (Photo credit should read DON EMMERT/AFP via Getty Images) /
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Bad Vegan: Fame. Fraud. Fugitives. is the latest true crime documentary series gripping the nation on Netflix. Released on Wednesday, the series is already no. 1 on Netflix’s Top 10, which is pretty impressive.

The four-part docuseries chronicles the rise and fall of “bad vegan” Sarma Melngailis, the woman who founded the popular and star-studded raw-food restaurant Pure Food and Wine. The series is full of shocking twists and turns, one of which includes the involvement of actor Alec Baldwin and his wife Hilaria.

Bad Vegan claims Alec Baldwin met Hilaria through Sarma Melngailis

During the documentary series, Melngailis reveals that Alec met his now-wife through her while he was dining at Pure Food and Wine. But before meeting Hilaria, Baldwin allegedly spent a great deal of time at the raw-food restaurant.

Apparently, Baldwin told Melngailis he wanted to find someone to settle down with, so Melngailis recommended he adopt a dog.

Alec Baldwin may have had a crush on Bad Vegan’s Sarma Melngailis

Journalist Allen Salkin says he believes that Baldwin actually had a crush on the restauranteur and that’s one of the reasons he visited the dining establishment so often. And Showbiz CheatSheet reports that the story goes deeper than that.

In 2010, Melngailis even wrote a blog post where she said she “loved” Baldwin, adding that he wanted a wife and kids and she was too busy with her business her own complicated relationship status to be that for him at the time.

However, she noticed he was unhappy and hoped to help him out by finding him the perfect dog to adopt. She does not address Baldwin by name in the post, but it appears to be about him, per Showbiz CheatSheet.

Here’s part of the quote from her blog post:

"Around this time, I’d been spending time with a man who I cared for deeply, even loved. Except it turned out he really wanted a wife, and more kids, and with my focus on my brand and business, that wasn’t what I wanted. I also may have had a boyfriend at the time so… it was complicated?"

Supposedly, Baldwin did pursue Melngailis, but she had a boyfriend at the time, sort of—as mentioned in the above quote, it was “complicated.” Soon after, Baldwin met Hilaria at the restaurant. However, despite never dating, Melngailis and Baldwin did remain good friends.

That said, in the docuseries, she admits to having some regret about not taking things further with him.

Bad Vegan
Sarma Melngailis in Bad Vegan: Fame. Fraud. Fugitives. Cr. Netflix © 2022 /

Sarma Melngailis credits Alec Baldwin with finding her beloved dog Leon

Before he met Hilaria, Baldwin spoke with Melngailis about wanting to find someone special. She recommended that he adopt a dog, but none of the animals caught his attention. However, one did appeal to Melngailis—her beloved dog Leon, who would become a significant part of the scam Anthony Strangis pulled on her by convincing he could make Leon immortal.

When she first found Leon, his name was Quinn. Melngailis sent pictures of him to Baldwin, thinking he would be the perfect fit for the actor. But Baldwin wasn’t interested and Melngailis wound up adopting the pitbull instead.

Bad Vegan intrigue: Alec Baldwin knew Shane Fox a.k.a. alleged conman Anthony Strangis

It’s actually partly because of the 63-year-old actor that Melngailis ever met Anthony Strangis. She noticed the two talking on Twitter via a humorous tweet exchange. Melngailis chose to pursue a conversation with Strangis, who, at the time, was going by his alias, Shane Fox. Of course, as we know, Strangis and Melngailis eventually married and he later convinced her to send him millions of dollars.

In 2017, Melngailis pled guilty to stealing more than $200,000 from an investor, in addition to criminal tax fraud charges. She was sentenced to almost four months in jail at Rikers Island.

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